A tale of domestic terror conjured from the depths of suburbia, Halloween represents a high-water mark of cinematic horror that has inspired and terrified ever since Michael Myers first stalked across the screen in John Carpenter’s 1978 original film. Perhaps one of Halloween’s most enduring aspects is the adaptability of its narrative framework to wear society’s deepest fears like a mask, concealing the face of pure evil beneath a rubbery visage that is at once familiar and unsettlingly alien.
No strangers to the darkness lurking on the edge of town, Los Angeles’ Slaughterhouse takes a lean, muscular approach to the shadowy attitudes of post-punk, dismantling the style’s baroque tendencies down to its angular skeletal framework. The band’s straight-faced debut LP, Fun Factory, enacted an uncompromising scorched-earth policy with a tracklist fully loaded with incendiary guitars and whip-taut vocals propelled with impurity by machine-gun percussion as pitch-back basslines blotted out the sun like billowing clouds of acrid smoke.
On “Halloween” Slaughterhouse deliver their own take on the Michael Myers mythos by transmuting the film’s timeless legacy of fear with their own unique brand of high-powered vitality. Reminiscent of Carpenter’s iconic riff without recycling or sampling a single note, “Halloween” moves at a breakneck pace as chiming guitars flash like cold steel to set the scene for an absolute bloodbath of over-the-top sonic mayhem. Delivered at a militant cadence, Slaughterhouse power through the familiar story with gleeful abandon, swapping Myers shuffling gait for a 100-mile-per-hour cataclysmic hellride to absolute damnation with no seatbelts and no brakes. The result is tremendously thrilling, shot through with electric adrenaline and glistening with sweat, breathless and wide-eyed as the track recedes ominously into the shadows as quickly as it materialized.
Paired with a remix that takes the track and runs it through a meat-grinder of sound, “Halloween” becomes a homunculus of electronic terror like a hyperglitched video arcade nightmare awash in pixelated static and erratic patterns blasting from the cold radiation of a fractured cathode ray tube. If the original track is Slaughterhouse’s big-screen adaptation, the Not a Friend Remix is the cursed found-footage VHS bootleg splattered with blood and saturated with forbidden evil. A Necronomicon for the digital age.
“Halloween” is unleashed as the latest entry in Suicide Squeeze’s Pinks & Purples Digital Singles Series on October 18th, joined by the “Halloween [Not A Friend Remix]” to complete the EP on October 28th.
2. Halloween (Not a Friend Remix)